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Address to the Women’s Peace March
Organizing Committee

August 12, 1914 — Women’s Peace March Organizing Committee, New York City


This gathering is assembled for a high moral purpose. In the face of the feeble accomplishment that can only follow, it may seem a mockery to call the women together to protest; but there is among many of us an imperative demand for expression at this time — when the horrifying spectacle of a world engaged in slaughter fairly unhinges reason.

If you should today vote to take steps for parade or meetings, you will be giving opportunity for a collective expression of this protest. Vital and fraternal relationships exist in this city between representatives of those nations who at this moment are intent upon mutual destruction. In the poorer quarters of the city this is more in evidence, and women more than men can strip war of its glamour and its out-of-date heroisms and patriotisms, and see it as a demon of destruction and hideous wrong — murder devastating home and happiness.

Women are here to reaffirm their protest against war, to restate their unalterable faith in the righteousness of Peace, the practicality of mediation — a protest against the outrage upon the moral convictions of long developed social sentiments, and to offer their profound sympathy and compassion for the victims of the European war. 



Source: The Lillian Wald Papers, Rare Books and Manuscripts Division, The New York Public Library, Astor, Lenox, and Tilden Foundations.


Also: Lillian Wald: Progressive Activist, ed. Claire Coss (New York: The Feminist Press) 1989, p. 85.